Strategic Marketing Planning for Non Profit Organization

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Georgetown University Center for Public & Nonprofit Leadership Marketing & Communications in Nonprofit Organizations David Williamson Essays on Excellence Lessons from the Georgetown Nonprofit Management Executive Certificate Program © 2009 Center for Public and Nonprofit Leadership Georgetown University Georgetown Public Policy Institute Essays on Excellence Lessons from the Georgetown Nonprofit Management Executive Certificate Program Advocacy in the Public Interest 2 Marketing & Communications in Nonprofit Organizations: It Matters More Than You Think David Williamson Marketing gets no respect in the nonprofit world. Program people tend to hold the most senior positions in nonprofits and accordingly…show more content…
Essays on Excellence Lessons from the Georgetown Nonprofit Management Executive Certificate Program Advocacy in the Public Interest 3 The Elevator Test Through the years, marketers have invented ever-more sophisticated ways to develop organizational position statements. Lots of these methodologies work, and you can spend big money with consultants on finely crafted and focus-group-tested positioning statements. At the same time, for nonprofits, the simpler approach advocated by the marketing savant Harry Beckwith may achieve much the same result at considerably lower cost and effort. I think of Beckwith whenever I find myself confronted with a classic “elevator test” moment. You strike up a conversation in an elevator, on the subway, in the line at Starbucks and the question soon arises: What do you do? The challenge is how to answer that question in an interesting, compelling manner that invites further questions about your organization, but that does not bog down in jargon or too much detail. You don’t have much time — maybe two sentences at most. So what do you include? What do you leave out? What’s your answer to the elevator test? Lest you think this exercise trivial, recall that everyone on the staff of your nonprofit gets asked the “what do you do?” question, in various forms, every day. In that sense, everyone on staff is a marketer, albeit rarely trained as such. Do you know how your staff is responding? Do you have any

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